Coronary microcirculation changes in non-ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy identified by novel perfusion CT

Wayne L. Miller, Thomas R. Behrenbeck, Cynthia H. McCollough, Eric E. Williamson, Shuai Leng, Timothy L. Kline, Erik L. Ritman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Intramyocardial microvessels demonstrate functional changes in cardiomyopathies. However, clinical computed tomography (CT) does not have adequate spatial resolution to assess the microvessels. Our hypothesis is that these functional changes manifest as altered heterogeneity of the spatial distribution of arteriolar perfusion territories. Our goal was to determine whether the spatial analysis of perfusion CT could clinically detect changes in the function and structure of the intramyocardial microcirculation in a non-ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Two groups were studied: (1) a Control group (12 male plus 12 female) with no risk factors nor evidence of coronary artery disease, and (2) a DCM group (12 male plus 12 female) with left ventricular ejection fraction ≤40 % and no evidence of coronary artery disease. Using the CT scan, the LV free wall thickness and its radius of curvature were measured. The DCM group was sub divided into those with LV free wall thickness <11.5 mm and those with thickness ≥11.5 mm. In the myocardial opacification phase of the CT scan sequence, myocardial perfusion (F) and intramyocardial blood volume (Bv) for multiple intramyocardial regions were computed. No significant differences between the groups were demonstrable in overall myocardial F or Bv. However, the myocardial regional data showed significantly increased spatial heterogeneity in the DCM group when compared to the Control group. The findings demonstrate that altered function of the subresolution intramyocardial microcirculation can be quantified with myocardial perfusion CT and that significant changes in these parameters occur in the DCM subjects with LV wall thickness greater than 11.5 mm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)881-888
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Cardiovascular Imaging
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015


  • Coronary artery disease
  • Dilated cardiomyopathy
  • Heart failure
  • Myocardial microcirculation
  • Regional myocardial blood flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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